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Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Video: Cousin Wee Suan's Wedding Tea Ceremony

There's an ulcer in my mouth, so I'm not really in the mood to write another lengthy entry, thus I'm merely posting a video for your enjoyment.

Basically, this video was shot on the 1st of July, during the mid-year break when I was back from Perth for a month. However, I edited this video on the 23rd of July, after I returned to Perth.

Chinese wedding dinners had always been boring to me, because people are NEVER punctual in these events. The dinner usually starts two hours after the time that's indicated in the invitation card. So, when the card says 6pm, it's usually 8pm, and because most people are aware of this, wedding dinners are usually 2-hour waits (...after all, there are still some people, like close relatives of the groom and bride, who wish in vain that people would finally be punctual.)

However, in this case, the dinner actually started in time, I guess it's all because my cousin married a pastor, so guests were more reluctant to let anyone wait for two hours. It was a fine night, the groom, who hailed from a single-parent family, gave a speech dedicated to the mother who struggled hard to raise him over the years. By the time he finished, there wasn't a dry eye in the ballroom where the dinner was held.

Unfortunately, I couldn't film the wedding dinner that day as I've ran out of batteries earlier. All I had was a video of the tea ceremony helped before the actual wedding, a usual Chinese custom. The wedding couple would serve Chinese tea to their seniors (like their parents, uncles, or any of their elders), and then, the younger relatives would serve Chinese tea to the wedding couple, I belonged to the latter group.

So this video will be pretty educational for those who want to know what a Chinese wedding is like (... sorta).

The background song I used is Be Brave, mixed by Rules For Radicals, downloaded from CCmixter, because I thought it's kinda funny to use such a song for a wedding video. Some of the editing techniques used here (blending of fast-mo and slow-mo, split screens, freeze frame in the end) had turned into stylistic trademarks used in both short films I made this year, Vertical Distance (which I made before shooting this video) and my latest, Girl Disconnected.

An aspiring actor I met in Perth had once spoken about wedding videos (and those who make them) with disdain, saying that it was the kind of stuff failed filmmakers (or videographers) were stuck with. I personally think that it's quite arrogant and ignorant to hold to such a belief when both Brian The Cinematographer (my cinematographer for Girl Disconnected, to those who had just started reading this site) and shooting and making wedding videos had been really useful in sharpening our skills.